Trainee Eligibility

This program is designed to offer focused training in the development and application of drug safety and effectiveness research across scientific disciplines.

There are three streams through which trainees can participate:

  • Stream 1 is a one-year, primarily online program providing foundational knowledge and skills in DS&E;
  • Stream 2 is a one-year program providing more advanced knowledge and skills development; and
  • Stream 3 is for trainees seeking to participate in a subset of the training program (e.g. Annual Symposium).

For more details, please see the program overview and curriculum overview.

To participate as a DSECT trainee in Stream 1 or 2:

Applications are welcomed from full-time graduate (Masters and PhD) students, Post-Doctoral fellows, and Clinical fellows registered at Canadian universities who have an interest in drug safety and effectiveness research. Students may be from a wide range of scientific disciplines including clinical therapeutics, population health, epidemiology, biostatistics, health services and health policy. Graduate students and post-doctoral fellows must be registered full-time in an academic program for the majority of the duration of the training program. Once a trainee completes their academic program or changes to part-time status, they will no longer be eligible to receive a training program stipend.

Students must be developing or completing a thesis project or other project related to therapeutics research. For studies requiring research ethics approval, a copy of the approval must be submitted at the time of acceptance to DSECT (it may be the same approval used by your graduate supervisor). The student’s current supervisor will continue to be his or her primary mentor throughout the program. As such, all applicants will be required to have the support of their supervisor. Students will also be matched with a secondary mentor from the DSECT program. This secondary mentor must be from the program mentor group and will facilitate trainee learning within this program.

Applicants to Stream 2 must have completed Stream 1 previously or must provide an explanation for bypassing Stream 1 within the application form. This should include a description of previous coursework related to drug safety and effectiveness research, experience conducting drug safety and effectiveness research, and key knowledge translation activities including experience interacting with knowledge users. The supervisor letter should also indicate the supervisor’s justification for why the applicant should omit Stream 1.

Trainees receiving DSECT stipend support will participate fully in the complete one-year program from April – March.


To participate as a DSECT trainee in Stream 3:

Applications are also welcome from individuals wishing to broaden exposure to drug safety and effectiveness research and who might not be otherwise eligible for Streams 1 or 2 or who wish to complete a subset of the program. Please note that there are fees for participation in the program activities as a trainee in Stream 3 (see application form for applicable fees).